ATLANTA (AP) — Abortion rights activists chanted "shame" as a Georgia Senate committee approved a measure that would ban most abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected.
Republicans in Georgia are joining others in many states moving to enact tough abortion restrictions, even though they're certain to be challenged in court, in hopes that recent appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court will find them constitutional.
The Senate Science and Technology Committee approved the bill on a party-line vote of 3 to 2 on Monday.
Sen. Valencia Seay spoke passionately against the bill. She said it's a woman's right to decide what they do with their body.
"My heart is heavy to this non-common sense approach to a woman's right to do what she does and that is her God given right to give birth. No man can give a birth," Sen. Seay said.
Women in Georgia have the legal right to seek abortions during the first 20 weeks of a pregnancy. A fetal heartbeat is generally detectable at around six weeks, before many women know they are pregnant.
Similar measures are moving through legislatures in Tennessee, Mississippi, Florida, and South Carolina.
Anti-abortion bill clears Georgia Senate committee